It is estimated that one in every nine Americans accesses music subscription services by using someone else’s account. This raises questions about the risk of sharing access to your music subscription accounts with others.
Spotify is the biggest music service in the world with around 422 million monthly active users and 182 million premium subscribers, while Apple Music has over 78 million subscribers. These huge numbers mean that music subscription services are a prime target for hackers.
Over 31% of Apple Music subscribers say they share the password to their accounts, while 22.2% of Spotify subscribers admit they do the same. With password sharing so common, it is essential to be aware of the dangers of doing this and how to protect yourself. Let’s take a look at how you can reduce the risk to your accounts.
Secure your account with a difficult-to-guess password
If you do share your Apple Music or Spotify account with friends, you need to have an appropriate password to protect your accounts. In practice, this means a password that is difficult to guess. This rules out common passwords such as 123456 and passwords that either includes common personal details or generic, easily deciphered clues. Shockingly, people still don’t treat passwords seriously in the digital era, despite the risk of sensitive/confidential data being hacked or leaked as a result of poor security being higher than ever.
In fact, a survey by ExpressVPN revealed that 42.3% of respondents said their passwords contained their first name, and 40% admitted to using their surname. Not only this but among the most commonly used passwords in the world were options like “passwort” (Germany) and “welkom” (Netherlands). Ideally, the perfect password would contain between eight and 12 characters and includes lowercase and uppercase letters, along with special characters and random numbers.
Do not share your sign-in ID
Apple recommends that you do not share your Apple ID with others, but rather that you set up the Family Sharing option, which allows the sharing of purchases and subscriptions, but not personal information, including emails and passwords. Spotify also offers a Duo option for two people living at the same address and a Family subscription. You should also be aware of the risk of using shared computers in cybercafes and libraries, it is essential that you remember to log out of your account when you have finished using it. If you do lose access to your Spotify account, you need to take immediate steps to restore access.
Be aware of phishing scams
The large number of registered subscribers to Apple Music and Spotify means that scammers and hackers attempt to access these accounts with phishing scams. These scams are increasingly sophisticated, with phishing scams disguised as quizzes on social media sites such as Facebook. In the case of emails, the best approach is to avoid clicking on any links contained in emails. Another option is to hover over any email you receive so that you can see the email address without clicking on it in order to check email address authenticity.
So, sharing access to music subscription services such as Apple Music and Spotify can be risky from a security perspective. If you do decide to share, you should take the precautions illustrated above to reduce the risk of having your account hacked.